Tuesday 19 May 2009

By Redo: Chembur

By Redo's Chembur has taken my a little while to pin down but I'm starting to feel I have. It is part gourmand with very pronounced ginger and lemon notes and part sexy, with the animalic pull of musk and amber at it's core.

The By Redo website says Chembur was originally a picnic spot outside Mumbai. I admit that I have an overly romantic side which is particularly brought out by perfume- but it isn't just romance that makes me think this scent is a transporter. Much as L'heure Bleu takes me to a 1920's Paris I can have no hope of knowing Chembur takes me to grass, next to water with an enormous, unmistakable Indian palace behind it. Now I have never been to India so I don't know if such a scene is total fantasy but I don't think it actually really matters- this scent takes me to somewhere my mind longs for me to go to- and if I can't get there this is the next best thing.

The official notes for Chembur are:

Top: Bergamot, Lemon, Elemi
Mid: Ginger, Temple Incense, Nutmeg
Base: Labdanum, Amber, Musk

I would say that order doesn't necessarily give a full picture of the scent on my wrist as I type. The lemon is very pronounced and very like the tingling lemon of Chembur's perfume cousin Gypsy Water. The bergamot continues to give that cerebral, calming aspect only it can even in the dry down and the ginger is very pronounced. Were it not for the amber (which I think is the most detectable of the base notes) and the incense which is used with a light touch this fragrance would be just like an aromatherapy spritz.

By Redo don't seem to suggest whether their scents should be for a man or woman- but neither do they make a fuss about their scents being unisex. This can and should be worn by women, both for themselves as it is a wonderful mix of the calming and stimulating and for others because it could be something of a conversation starter. However I think Chembur would be devastatingly good on the right man- and one who doesn't necessarily hold pack with the atomiser as the lasting power is not it's best feature (which isn't something I have found with the other fragrances in the line). Sometimes I like to really notice what a person is wearing and this is one scent you shouldn't be shy to let loose.

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